tv The Situation Room CNN October 12, 2012 4:00pm-7:00pm EDT
sun, in 18 days. the year is only 18 days long. that's why it's so close and so hot. >> can we see it from here if we look up with the telescope? >> not with the naked eye. no. you can see it in pictures. >> i like sparkly things if i want to look up and see it far, far away. >> i will buy you a diamond twice the size of the earth. >> shucks, i don't need that. girl does like a diamond here and there. chad, thank you very much. that's fascinating. >> have a good weekend. >> you too. and you too as well. now to wolf blitzer. "the situation room" begins now. brooke, thanks very much. happening now, joe biden isn't the only one who's smiling today. we're looking ahead to the next round in the presidential debates including what lessons the president might want to take from his running mate's performance. also, fooling iran. we're taking you inside the real life cia thriller in movie theaters right now. i'm wolf blitzer. you're in "the situation room."
we begin with today's double declarations of victory after the vice presidential debate. first, the republicans. in a little bit mitt romney teams up with congressman paul ryan in the swing state of ohio. and you're going to see their rally live right here in "the situation room." already today romney's called his running mate's debate performance thoughtful, respectful, steady and poised. our national political correspondent jim acosta has more now on the republican's post debate spin. >> reporter: wolf, even though paul ryan said he saw it coming, republican strategists i talk to in the post debate spin room said they were not expecting joe biden's repeated interruptions and laugh out loud style. if the vice president's performance could be summed up as lol, the republican response
was omg. >> i'm great. >> reporter: at breakfast after his fiery debate with vice president joe biden, paul ryan still had his sunny side up. >> no. it's what i expected. [ laughter ] >> reporter: ryan offered no complaints about biden's aggressive performance. which appeared to be designed to put some sorely needed points on the president's scoreboard, whether it was on ryan's past request for stimulus money. >> two occasions we advocated for constituents applying for grants. that's what we do. >> reporter: or ryan's attempt to compare the mitt romney tax plan to jack kennedy's. >> jack kennedy lowered tax rates. >> oh, now you're jack kennedy? >> reporter: ryan was able to fire back with a few zingers of his own. >> mr. vice president, i know you're under a lot of duress to make up for lost ground. i think the vice president very well knows that sometimes the words don't come out of your mouth the right way.
>> reporter: republicans in the post debate spin room tried to make the case biden failed not only on style. >> quite frankly i was embarrassed for the vice president. i mean, the laughs. we counted 82 times that joe biden interrupted paul ryan. >> reporter: but also on substance pointing to the vice president's response on whether there was adequate security before the attack on the u.s. consulate in libya. >> and they wanted more security there. >> well, we weren't told they wanted more security. we did not know they wanted more security. >> we just had a major hearing on this. that was one of the heart -- the heart of the point was these requests went unheated. and obviously the vice president's not paying any attention. >> reporter: declaring victory for his running mate, romney seized on what his campaign has dubbed biden's benghazi bungle. >> because the vice president directly contradicted the sworn testimony of state department officials. he's doubling down on denial.
and we need to understand exactly what happened. >> reporter: back in the spin room obama campaign manager said biden proved it was ryan who was unprepared. >> he got past paul ryan's index card talking points and got into the details. that's exactly what the american voters wanted. >> reporter: both campaigns concede what happened here in kentucky may not have a lasting effect on the polls but may have set a new combative tone to the race that could carry into the debate on tuesday. >> jim acosta, thanks very much. let's go to the democrats now. they're also declaring victory as the joe biden in your face performance is what the president needed. although he wrapped up a rally in of all places, paul ryan's home state of wisconsin. >> i'm sure you observed last night we had a little bit of a debate. with a gentleman and he is a
gentleman, a gentleman from wisconsin, congressman ryan, who -- no. i hardly agree with anything he says, but i want to tell you i think he's a decent guy. and he has a beautiful family. and he's a great husband and father. and for that i have great respect for him. [ applause ] but you know anyone who watched that debate i don't think there's any doubt that congressman ryan and i, governor romney and the president, we have a fundamentally different vision for america. and quite frankly a fundamentally different value set. and the fact is that the differences that we have about the future of this country are quite frankly profound. they're as profound as any difference as any presidential campaign that i've observed that i've been involved in. and the truth is that i think people were listening. and if they were, they know what
some of those differences are. and they know how those differences can fundamentally affect the direction of this country. >> let's dig a little deeper right now with our chief political analyst gloria borger. are you surprised that they're pounding the romney campaign on libya right now? the whole issue of the obama administration and libya as opposed to focusing in on issue number one, the economy? >> i think they're going to try and do both. i think the reason they're pounding at the libya issue is that they think there's an opening there. they found a chink in the armor. mitt romney right now is kind of tied with the president in the last poll we looked at on the leadership issue. they want to get an advantage. what they're trying to say and what joe biden said yesterday, if he didn't know, he should have known. the buck stops there. this is a question of who's in charge. what we did hear at the state department hearing is that there is an explanation for this from the state department which is they felt they wanted the
libyans to take charge of their own security. and of course the president and the vice president are not involved in every security matter when it comes to embassies. but this being a political year, mitt romney is saying, you know what, by implication if i were president, i would have known about the security problems. or the security problems would have been fixed on my watch. >> but you agree that joe biden helped president obama going into next week's second presidential debate? >> i do. i think that he righted the ship as we were talking about last night. that there are lots of members of the democratic base who were very upset by the president's lack of passion. and joe biden had a lot of passion last night. and take a look at this because he particularly talked from the heart about medicare. >> look. folks, use your common sense. who do you trust on this, a man who introduced a bill that would
raise it $6,400 a year, knowing it and passing it and romney saying sign it or me and the president. >> so that's what presidential elections are about. they're about trust. who do you trust? and on the particular issue of medicare where they believe they have an advantage particularly because of paul ryan's budget, joe biden perhaps was the best person to deliver that message to the american public. we're the guys you can trust. we like medicare. they don't. >> yeah. as long as they were talking about medicare or social security. >> yes. >> the democrats had an advantage. biden had an advantage over ryan when they got to some other issues maybe not. did this vice presidential debate though really change the overall dynamic of which way this race is probably going? >> probably not. you saw a poll last night. people watching this were kind of split. the democratic base got excited again. the republicans felt that paul ryan passed an important threshold. and that is plausibility as a
vice president who could potentially become president of the united states. and the fact that he did well for himself really says that mitt romney's judgment in choosing him was a good judgment for republicans. and so i think that they found that to be validating that he could go toe-to-toe with joe biden. and so i think for each party it's kind of okay, we did it. and now of course to candy's debate next week. >> next tuesday night. our coverage by the way 7:00 p.m. eastern. >> be there. >> what was impressive is they didn't only go toe-to-toe on domestic issues, but on national security and foreign policy issues, which is biden's strength and supposedly ryan's weakness, they were pretty much toe-to-toe as well. >> yeah. he exhibited a lot of fluency. and it was a great debate. it was one of the most substantive debates we have seen in this entire presidential contest. so most welcome viewing. >> i thought it was excellent. thank you.
let's go to the focus. it turns now to the second presidential debate next tuesday night and whether president obama learned any real lessons from vice president biden's performance. i'll ask his campaign's press secretary, jen psaki. she's standing by live. and why is the space shuttle moving through the streets of los angeles? [ whistle blowing ] where do you hear that beat? campbell's healthy request soup lets you hear it... in your heart. [ basketball bouncing ] heart healthy. great taste. mmm... [ male announcer ] sounds good. it's amazing what soup can do. ♪ [ male announcer ] its lightweight construction makes it nimble...
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there's no doubt we saw more verbal fireworks in the vice presidential debate last night than during last week's showdown between mitt romney and barack obama. look at this. >> but it shouldn't be surprising for a guy who says 47% of the american people are unwilling to take responsibility for lies. no commitment to the automobile industry. he just -- he said let it go bankrupt. period. these guys haven't been big on medicare from the beginning. their party's not been big on medicare from the beginning. >> all right. he came out swinging, obviously,
jen psaki is here, the campaign press secretary -- the obama campaign press secretary. jen, thanks very much. >> thank you, pleasure to be here. >> you're the traveling press secretary. >> that's right. >> all right. just wanted to be precise. what lessons did president obama learn from vice president biden, his performance last night? >> i watched the debate last night with the president on the plane. a bunch of staff did. we were all rooting and cheering for the vice president. the president was too. i think the american people saw a really passionate and fired up vice president last night. and the president's fired up and excited about the debate next tuesday. we saw once again that facts matter. that that's an important part of this. and there's no question going into next tuesday the president will keep that in mind. >> we saw the picture, the still photo of the white house releasing the president watching on air force one. you know what channel he was watching. >> i will take all credit. i don't know if i deserve it, but we were watching cnn last night. >> good taste last night. you saw the swig l.
can we expect president obama to come out, it's a town hall style, which is more complicated, a little more feisty and assertive? >> the american audience is still the audience and it's still the audience interacting in the town hall. but we've seen last night in the debate with paul ryan. last week in the debate with mitt romney, they're both willing to say and do anything to become president and vice president. and they're a little fast and loose with the facts. that's a lesson we've learned. we've been holding their feet to the fire over the last ten days. and we're going to continue to do that. the president included. >> the president says he was a little too polite last time. maybe he'll be less polite this time. here's another little exchange that the vice president had with paul ryan. i'm going to play some of these clips. >> 7.4 million seniors are projected to lose the current medicare advantage coverage they have, that's a $3,200 benefit cut -- >> more people -- >> these are from your own actuaries. >> more people signed up for
medicare advantage after the change. >> it's a plan i put together with a prominent democratic senator from oregon -- >> there's not one democrat that endorses it. not one democrat who signed the plan -- >> mr. vice president, i know you're under a lot of duress to make up for lost ground, but i think we would be better served if we don't keep interrupting each other. >> interrupting each other. smirking, laughing, you saw the exchanges. the criticism now is that the vice president went too far. what do you say? >> look, i know many people in this town have known the vice president for 20, 30 years, republicans and democrats included. there's no guy who's more likable and more passionate about what he does and his job he's had for the last four years and the last 30. look, i think he was having fun up there. he was expressing his passion for the middle class and continuing to fight for them. he was holding paul ryan's feet to the fire about things that weren't exactly true. whether that was medicare or his inability to explain how the middle class wouldn't be hurt by the $5 trillion tax cut package. >> some say he was coming across as rude.
>> listen, toif say, if mitt romney and paul ryan think they're going to talk tough to china but can't handle a little humor by the vice president, they need to toughen up a little bit. >> let me clarify for you this point. we heard it from the vice president a couple times last night. i'll play the clip. >> uh-huh. >> the middle class will pay less and people making a million dollars or more will begin to contribute slightly more. >> a million dollars a year more, they'll pay a little more in taxes than people making less than a million. it used to be $200,000 for individuals, $250,000 for couples filing jointly, families. now he's talking about a million dollars or more. what's the point there? >> no. the point that the vice president was making is that this tax cut package that mitt romney and paul ryan support absolutely makes no sense because people making over $1 million would benefit by about $800 billion. we still the president, the vice president still absolutely believe that people making over $250,000, their taxes have to go up.
we just can't -- we can't afford it. so that position hasn't changed. he was just highlighting how the highest income benefit from their tax cut package. >> is john kerry still playing mitt romney in the debate preparation leading up to next tuesday for the president? >> john kerry is, was, still remains a key part of the debate prep team. he did an amazing job. and we think he will moving forward as well. >> he's still playing mitt romney. >> he is. >> you have total confidence that he's doing a good job? >> absolutely. >> have you been watching some of those? >> i haven't been. i've been a little busy with a lot of other things. i know that everybody appreciates all the hard work snard kerry's put in, everybody thinks he's been doing a fantastic job. we're looking forward to next tuesday. the president's psyched up for it. >> jen psaki, thanks very much for coming in. >> thank you. >> we'll be watching next tuesday night obviously. by the way, coming up here in "the situation room" during our 6:00 p.m. eastern hour, congressman jason chaffetz, a
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i think it came as a surprise to some people, wolf. the nobel committee cited the ability to promote peace, democracy and stability in europe since world war ii and cited greece, spain and portugal all had dictatorships and now have democratic governments. comes as the 27-nation body faces criticism of a handling of a massive debt crisis. and the nuclear plant meltdown following last year's devastating and tsunami in japan, turns out it could have been avoided. that's according to a stunning admission from the operator of the crippled fukushima plant. tokyo electric power company says it downplayed safety risks out of fear it would lead to a plant shutdown. the power was knocked out leading to meltdowns and forced evacuations. and american airlines is canceling more flights through mid-november as it continues to deal with operational problems. the new cuts mean the elimination of about 31 flights per day. that is about 1%. the airline says --
nearly three dozen passenge and crew stranded on a ferry in lake erie are finally headed for dry ground. the boat was pulled free from a sand bar this afternoon. 18 passengers and crew members had been stuck on the ferry since it ran aground yesterday. strong winds and rough waves delayed efforts. authorities though say they had plenty of food. and good news is everyone is okay, wolf. >> key words, everyone's okay. thanks very much, lisa. with just four days until the next presidential debate, should president obama and governor romney take a page from their running mates' debate last night? our special panel getting ready to discuss. inspiration. great power. iconic design. exhilarating performance. [ race announcer ] audi once again has created le mans history! [ male announcer ] and once in a great while...
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live. also, the one misstep by paul ryan during last night's debate which could cost his ticket some votes. and cnn has learned the company at the center of the meningitis outbreak in the united states has a deadly past. stand by, you're in "the situation room." vice president joe biden and congressman paul ryan, they played to their strengths last night. now looking forward to next week's debate, president obama and governor romney might want to follow their lead. >> one person on stage last night who was thoughtful and respectful, steady and poised. >> if we're hit by terrorists, we're going to call it for what it is, a terrorist attack. >> if the president had no passion, joe biden had all passion all the time. >> i've had it up to here with this notion that 47% -- it's about time they take some responsibility here. >> the president on tuesday is
not that aggressive in a biden fashion. and, two, he wants to talk a lot more about the general optimism on the economy. >> all right. let's get straight to cnn contributor and sirius xm radio host pete dominick. he's got a special panel. pete. >> thank you, wolf blitzer. well, next week is the big debate in long island. we've got to talk about what can be learned from the bottom of the ticket. what can be learned by the performance last night by paul ryan and joe biden? what can they do differently? ross, i'll start with you. >> with me. i mean, i think, you know, the president needs some of what biden brought to the table last night, right? i mean, i think democrats and liberals were very excited, enthused to have a candidate out there who actually seemed to be showing some passion, who seemed to really believe that a second term for obama/biden was, you know, a genuinely good idea. and so on. he needs to channel some of that without, you know, rolling his eyes, saying malarkey, interrupting mitt romney and all the stuff that, you know, maybe
biden can get away with because it's a vice presidential debate you can't do if you're the president. but it's also tricky because the next debate is a town hall format. it's a completely different format. and you're interacting with the audience in a way people weren't last night. >> pete, i think president obama has nowhere to go but up. he's got to show up. >> that's for sure. >> he's got to show up, speak up, cheer up and look up. or if not, he's going to have to pack up. >> the big lesson to be learned is that the president leads with facts and follows it with passion, the american people are going to get it. i think joe biden demonstrated that loost night. >> i thought one thing that was interesting was you can have a debate that talked about a lot of dense issues and serious issues, but still was engaging and lively and really connected with the audience on both sides. i think that's a lesson for both candidates going forward. >> but president obama needs to learn how to make his points and he needs to learn how to make them concisely and quickly. joe biden did it, paul ryan did it, mitt romney did it.
president obama has passed some good policies. he needs to know how to sell them and explain them in a sound bite in a way people can understand. i don't know, bill clinton does it. is it that hard to learn how to explain? >> yes, it is. >> he's done it before. >> he's been in elected office now for an awfully long time and he hasn't done it. you'll remember, when he started listing back before he changed his mind when he listed one of his biggest failures or the first was not being able to sell his story. and part of it is is that he can't speak in the short answers and sound bites. >> this is rare now to have republicans saying that the president's main failure is that he doesn't know how to speak clearly and talk about serious issues. >> no. >> in telling stories in a narrative. and i think in a debate, i think he had an off night clearly. he admits that. lots of people admit that. one thing we know for sure about this president and one thing he's been able to do all along is to provide clarity for complicated issues people
disagree on but bring people together through clear language. >> the president is resilience. he has to be resilient to have gotten through -- >> competitive. >> and competitive, but to have gotten through this kind of an economy where the republicans were deep sixing the economy and the president brought us out. >> obama resilience in the face of 8% unemployment is an inspiration for all. i'm sure all unemployed americans -- >> here's a little bit. what can romney learn or not learn from paul ryan? we focused so much on the president's awful performance, what does mitt romney need to change if anything? >> i think most of what romney needs to change just has to do with the format, right? you're going to be in a situation where both obama and romney are trying to sort of connect and sell themselves both to the audience at home but also to the people they're talking to in the room. and that's a completely different situation from the first debate. so romney i think overall most
people would say, you know, romney overall had a better debate than ryan did. i thought ryan was fine. >> those who were watching. >> cleared the bar and so on. i don't think romney looks at the ryan performance and says i need to model myself after that. i think ryan was very clearly just trying to sort of establish, you know, sort of keep the momentum going. deliver a sort of solid calibrated performance and not give the democrats some big sound bite that they could latch onto. >> in fact, he did give them some things. i mean, i think this is a problem on substance, not on form but on substance with paul ryan. paul ryan and mitt romney need to reconcile their positions with respect to abortion. that's really clear that they have to do that. they have to reconcile where they are in terms of saying where it is that their $5 trillion is going to come from if not on the backs of middle class americans. a lot of substance -- >> needs to reconcile their position on where they are on benghazi. >> right. i mean, joe biden -- we spent today listening to the white house say everything joe biden
said about benghazi, he wasn't speaking for the administration. he was speaking for joe biden. >> do voters -- i think we can criticize the administration quite a bit on how this has been handled and the confusion and maybe dishonesty. do voters care about their reaction to benghazi in this election? because i'm not sure that that's an issue that voters care. they should. they absolutely should. but i'm not sure that's something -- >> we're not through flushing out this issue. this issue is continuing to get more complicated. >> and republicans -- >> this is not about republicans. come on, guys. there's four dead americans. >> it's an evolving security situation. one can expect one thing true in the beginning is different in the end. i think we have to take the politics out of this. what voters care about, they may not care about benghazi, but they care about bin laden. >> yesterday obama had a six-point advantage on handling foreign policy and a four-point advantage on handling terrorism. that's a fox news poll. i think people are looking at the total record on foreign
policy and looking for someone who's not going to be rash. mitt romney in the wake of the crisis was incredibly rash. that's something that got lost a little bit in ryan's presentation yesterday. >> i think the president has had an advantage on foreign policy throughout the election. but it's striking that 6% lead is down from a 12% lead. >> now the polls aren't rigged anymore, aren't they looking pretty good? >> thank god i don't need to unskew the polls today. >> nobody here thinks the polls were rigged, right? >> the polls weren't rigged. the bls numbers weren't rigged. >> the other thing though is this town hall format is way different. a lot of people say it plays to president obama's advantage. president obama's got to change gears, take a lot of different tactics and ready for this moderate mitt and mitt romney knows president obama as you said is competitive and going to try to come back. and that changes the game. >> one advantage that president obama has this time frankly is that the expectations game has gone top si ter vi.
people were expecting him to do extremely well. this time if he's able to show up articulate a sentence smile every few minutes he's going to do better than last time. the expectations have changed. >> but the challenge for obama and this goes back to the point you were making, right. i think it's true obama has great communication skills in certain settings in certain days. but he's always struggled with this personal connection. >> i do think the president does quite well in a town hall format, i think much more so than standing behind the podium. >> i think you're right. generally it does. we'll see what happens next tuesday. we have to take a quick break. we're going to come back and give some unsuspecting targets our unsolicited advice. you do not want to miss this part of our segment. we'll be right back. [ female announcer ] the best things in life are the real things. nature valley trail mix bars are made with real ingredients you can see.
welcome back to wolf blitzer's "the situation room." i'm pete dominick. we have hijacked the room with our brilliant panel because right now we want to give our unsolicited advice, not that anybody asked. ana, i'm going to start with you. looks like you have a ballot there of some sort. >> well, regardless of what it may look like, this is not donald trump's prenup. this front and back legal size pages full of legalese is my florida ballot. the florida legislature in its infinite wisdom decided to put the entire language of all the constitutional amendments on it. my advice for florida voters, this is going to be a long hard complicated ballot, study your sample ballots, pack a lunch, wear comfortable shoes, this
could take some time. and to the florida legislature, couple of words, fix it. >> it's a good thing there's never been any problems with florida ballots in the past. otherwise this might be actually a concern for the rest of the country as well. >> i actually do think this is going to turn into a problem that affects every county's going to have longer more complicated ballots. >> who runs the legislature at the state house? >> good people elected by the voters of florida. >> is it republicans or democrats? i mean, who wins in this? who wants this? this can't be good. i'm falling asleep looking at that. >> i'm telling you, this cannot be good and i think it's going to end up in long lines, it's going to open up a problem. god knows we had a hard time handling chads. i don't know how we're going to handle legalese. >> they also need a magnifying glass in addition to lunch. my unsolicited advice for america as they're watching the debates come up is that they
should listen to their heads but pay attention to their bodies. >> i think they should also listen to their pocketbook. pay some attention to what's going on there. we need jobs. we need to be able to feed our families. we need to be able to put food on our table. >> but they need reproductive freedom to make sure they have the ability to make all those choices. the choice is actually really clear between one direction or the other. and so they need to listen, pay attention to their head, listen to their -- >> post debate the gap with women has also narrowed. it's narrowed with practically every demographic group. >> women and men move the gaps the same. i was watching the cnn dials last night. when paul ryan was watching abortion, women were flatlined. >> i think his lines went up when he was talking about the ultrasound of his first child. if i'm remembering the cnn -- >> i agree with you, congresswoman. we can either talk about the abortion issue forever or we can get to ross -- >> not about the abortiondisapp.
>> all right. >> mine is for the people of the european union. first of all, congratulations on being awarded the nobel peace prize. i've e-mailed all my friends in europe where they're going to put it on their mantelpiece or somewhere else. and also be ware of norwegians bearing gifts. obviously the point was to say the eu has been great, it's encouraged peace and security and probably we need further integration and so on. the thing is that norway itself is actually not a member of the european union and is not a member of the euro and norwegians are probably feeling pretty relieved about that right now. and norway in spite of not being part of the eu has managed to resist the temptation to invade sweden for the last 20 or 30 years. >> they have a huge plot of oil there too, to be fair. >> they do. good reason. >> ross, the question is who's going to get the cash money? god knows there's enough country in the european union that need it. >> right. it's all going to greece.
>> right. >> my advice would be to republican elected officials all over the country. we know about todd akin and his outlandish remarks on rape. there have been a whole host of other elected officials who have made similarly outlandish comments. a republican elected official in wisconsin who said something horrible and double downed and repeated said what i meant to say was this horrible thing about rape. an elected official in arkansas wrote a book saying slavery could have been a good thing. he wrote a letter to double down on that position. so if you find yourself wanting to talk about rape or slavery and you are a republican elected official, my unsolicited advice would be just hold on a moment, take a break, step outside. pretend you have a phone call and just maybe you want to avoid it. you will make national news. >> or just don't ever speak on those issues because it's not going to go well. no one's defending these idiots. >> those are comments that no matter what never go the right direction. >> no. and also comments that shows how little men understand about women and their bodies. it's ignorant and ridiculous.
>> back to my unsolicited advice. >> we all agree on this though. >> we all agree that men don't understand women's bodies. >> thank you, ana. do you want to expand on it? all right. all right. my unsolicited advice is for debate watchers and for the media who talks about style over substance. this is not a fashion show. we're not voting for "american idol" or voting to root somebody off the island. it's not about, oh, he rolled his eyes, he threw his hands up, he cocked his head to the side. he got a little sweaty. you should get sweaty. there's a lot of pressure. it should be about substance. it should be about policy. we should have as much of that and listening for that as voters. we know we're not going to get everything we want to hear, but last night's debate we got a lot more i think substance and a lot of style from joe biden and there was a lot of focus on it, but substance matters. and americans need to stop worrying about how someone looks and what tie they're wearing and how they look and how they
stand. that's not going to affect their lives. substance over style. hands in, do we agree? yes, no? >> don't you think joe biden's style was part of his substance? part of the point of the biden performance was -- >> it's part of his character. part of his personality. >> i care a lot more about what he said than how he said it. >> i care that he made it really clear we don't need malarkey. >> that's right. >> i will not go in with you because i think it will unemploy, it will lead to the unemployment of the body language experts and i will not do that to the american body language experts. >> i say malarkey. thank you guys. and right back to wolf blitzer right now. pete, thanks very much. thanks to the entire panel. up next, fooling iran. we're talking to the former cia agent behind a real life spy thriller turned hollywood movie. two years ago, the people of bp made a commitment to the gulf. bp has paid over twenty-three billion dollars to help those affected and to cover cleanup costs.
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six americans trapped in iran at the height of the revolution. now ben affleck's thriller to save their lives. we sat down with the former cia specialist who concocted a plan to go undercover. >> reporter: only with hollywood's help could a real life high stakes scheme this outrageous, this dangerous, actually work. >> six hostages went out a back exit. >> reporter: a covert plan by a cunning cia agent to rescue six american diplomats trapped in iran. they escaped from the u.s. embassy on the day of its takeover during the 1979
revolution. >> it's going to take a miracle to get them out. >> reporter: oscar winning nail biting espionage thriller "argo" isn't just the stuff of movies, it's based on actual events. the and spy he portrays is tony men dez. we sat down with the former cia specialist who took a page out of hollywood to pull off a risky mission, sneak into iran disguised as a filmmaker, rendezvous with the diplomats and get them on a plane. >> we all fly out together as a film crew. >> all about magic and illusion. hollywood magic, cia magic. >> reporter: with heightened tensions, over 52 americans held hostage by iranian revolutionary guards at the u.s. embassy, the fake scenario had to look real. >> we got office space on the old sunset lot in hollywood. got a hold of michael douglas who was vacating that premise at that time. and that was the beginning of our cover legend. >> looking back now, it was a
crazy idea, tony. >> we always had to sell our product. just like anybody else. so we put our sign on the door, argo studio 6 production. >> reporter: studio six, a coded reference to the men he would rescue on january 28, 1980 after they had spent nearly three months hiding at the homes of canadian diplomats. >> the last thing we did is went down to hollywood reporter and took out full-page ads with our logo on it. >> reporter: mendez spared no detail to prevent his cover from being blown. >> everybody in the world knows what hollywood is. we distracted people all along the line and got them to help us rather than to harm us. and it worked. >> all right. here we go. standby. >> reporter: mendez provided long classified information to director ben afleck about the mission whose name came from greek mythology's impossible quest for the golden fleece. >> i want to make a movie about real people who sacrifices for their country when they do these missions were more kind of grounded and realistic. the quiet uncertainty, will i
ever come back? will i die overseas? >> the six american diplomats whose lives you saved, they worked closely on this film as well. what do they say to you today? >> when are we going to get paid here? it's extended family. >> reporter: life is different for this accomplished author, painter and doting grandfather. but the former spy reminds us argo was one of the cia's best kept secrets and there are many more. >> well, i'll take these ideas to my grave and nobody will know. that's cool. >> reporter: other ideas? >> oh, we have more ideas of course. >> reporter: are you itching for another operation? something top secret? >> oh, absolutely. >> reporter: you would do it in a heartbeat again today. >> argo. >> reporter: cnn, los angeles. >> "argo" was made by warner brothers owned by cnn's parent company time-warner. i'm looking forward to seeing this film. you heard it here on cnn's last night's debate joe biden
said the white house didn't know about extra security requests for libya. did he misspeak? what's going on? we're fact checking. that's coming up in our next hour. also, the space shuttle "endeavour" joins the l.a. commute. [ female announcer ] introducing yoplait greek 100. 100% new. 100% mmm... wow, that is mmm... it's so mmm you might not believe it's a hundred calories. new yoplait greek 100. it is so good.
trust icy hot for powerful relief. [ male announcer ] the icy hot patch. goes on icy to dull pain, hot to relax it away. so you're back to full speed. [ male announcer ] icy hot. power past pain. it's hard to tell but that is the space shuttle "endeavour" actually moving through the streets, yes, of los angeles right now. not moving very quickly i should say. it's a very, very slow journey. the retired shuttle is only going about 12 miles, but it's expected to take two days to get there. yes, two days. john zarrella's on the scene for us. he's following "endeavour." he's joining us in l.a. john, two days, 12 miles, what's
going on? >> reporter: yeah, wolf. well just now they left this holding area where it's been for the last nine hours and it is heading up. and you're right. it's going to take two days because they're moving very, very slowly. like i said, nine hours here alone where it stopped. what the reason of that because they had to move it very early in the morning in the overnight hours from l.a.x. about three miles from this location. they wanted to do that before rush hour traffic. and then they sat here for nine hours until they got later in the day they had to take some power lines down, move some power lines that are further down the road. and then they're going -- now they're continuing on on the journey. but all during the day today, wolf, hundreds and hundreds of people showed up here to get really a close up look at the shuttle. a view that, you know, unless you were an asts astro naught, never got that close.
something a bit controversial, i mentioned the moving of the power lines, they had to cut down 400 trees in order to get the shuttle from l.a.x. to the california science center. that caused quite a stir. science center says, look, we will in fact replant two trees for every tree that was cut down. so that at least settled things down a bit. but the folks at the science center, wolf, also told us that tomorrow particularly there are some places along the route even with all the work that they have done that there will be a clearance of no more than two to three inches on either side of the space shuttle's 78-foot wingspan. so they've got to do some real, real delicate maneuvering. and they will take those spots even more slowly than the 2 miles an hour they're going now on to the next location. wolf, you know, later tonight they're actually going to be crossing the 405. and they're going to be
transferring from the tow system they're using now to a pickup truck because that's lighter. and that will tow them across the 405 bridge. wolf. >> john zarrella on the scene for us in los angeles. john, thanks very much. and you're in "the situation room." happening now, both campaigns are saying they won last night's vice presidential debate. but how will that slugging match affect the campaign going forward? there's now a criminal investigation into a republican finance voter registration effort in florida. but is the contractor still working for the gop in other states? and while paul ryan's performance was impressive last night his statements on a subject close to his heart fell flat with undecided voters. we want to welcome our viewers in the united states and around the world. i'm wolf blitzer. you're in "the situation room."
both sides are claiming victory and acting like winners on the campaign trail today after last night's hard fought vice presidential debate. democratic base feels joe biden re-energized that race. biden took the energy to paul ryan's backyard today. dan lothian has more. >> reporter: as you know, the campaign sees vice president biden as an effective attack dog. and he was in that mode again today. he started off his remarks by saying some kind things about congressman ryan. saying he's a decent guy. that he respected him. but then he made that sharp turn saying that he hardly agrees with anything that he says. the vice president accusing the gop ticket of misleading voters,
hitting them on taxes, on bain, on afghanistan, on women's rights. he was really building on the narrative we heard during the debate last night. but was especially aggressive and sharp when he talked about the 47%. >> these are the folk who is talk about 47% of the american people being unwilling to take responsibility. and by the way, the congressman from wisconsin in his speech to the spectator said that 30% of the american people are takers. i don't know who these guys are talking about. i don't know who -- these people are like my mom and dad were. the people in the neighborhoods i grew up in. 82% of them paid their payroll taxes and other taxes at an effective rate higher than romney pays his taxes. over 10% of them are senior citizens on social security. the rest are disabled vets and
veterans fighting and military personnel fighting now. that's the 47%. >> now, wolf, one thing we did note missing from his remarks, libya. no mention of libya. of course that's the big controversy today because last night during the debate the vice president said he did not know about this request for additional security in benghazi. well, today mitt romney on the campaign trail in richmond, virginia, leveled this criticism against him saying he's "doubling down on denial." >> thanks very much, dan lothian at the white house. let's go a little further right now on libya and what's going on. it's a controversy that is clearly still swirling after the debate. and it concerns the obama administration's handling of the attack on the u.s. consulate in benghazi. paul ryan was quick to pounce on that in the debate. vice president biden didn't provide very clear responses. let's turn to our foreign affairs correspondent jill dougherty who's taking a much closer look. what are you seeing, jill? >> reporter: wolf, you know, it
was the very first right off the bat the very first question at that debate, what exactly happened in benghazi? there are three investigations underway. at this point there is a lot that is still unclear. so here's our fact check on a few key issues. it's one of the most serious charges congressman paul ryan leveled at vice president joe biden. >> there were requests for extra security. those requests were not honored. >> reporter: extra security for u.s. diplomats in libya. but biden claims the white house didn't know about security requests. >> we weren't told they wanted more security. we did not know they wanted more security again. >> reporter: but the former regional security officer in libya told a congressional committee that he asked for additional security for benghazi months before the attack and was denied. it's not known for now how high up in the administration his request got. >> he was speaking directly for himself and for the president.
he meant the white house. these are issues appropriately that are handled by security professionals at the state department. and that's what he was talking about. >> reporter: the president's spokesman is right. typically the state department deals with security for its personnel on its own. so we rate this unclear. the vice president claims the house republicans cut funding for embassy security. >> i will be very specific. number one, this lecture on embassy security, the congressman here cut embassy security in his budget by $300 million below what we asked for. >> reporter: figures from the democratic house oversight committee back that up. and the republican house appropriations committee confirms it. but after the senate added more money, the final bill was about $270 million less than the administration requested. so biden's claim is true. congressman ryan says the state department should have called in
the marines to protect the ambassador to libya. >> our ambassador in paris has a marine detachment guarding him. shouldn't we have a marine detachment guarding our ambassador in benghazi, a place where we knew there's an al qaeda cell with arms? >> reporter: but that's not the job of the marines says the state department. >> they're not mandated and chartered to perform -- can i finish my sentence? -- to perform a bodyguard function. >> reporter: the marines job according to its website is to protect classified information in embassies and consulates. benghazi was a temporary mission with no classified documents or equipment. so ryan's claim is false. now, benghazi is turning out to be a major campaign issue. but this debate is being waged -- carried out before the final results and reports are coming out from those three investigations. and that is the fbi, congress and also the state department itself.
so a lot of this who knew what when may not be clear until after the election, wolf. >> after these investigations are wrapped up. jill, thanks very much. john king has been looking into this as well. he's here. this is becoming a big issue out there on the campaign, john, isn't it? >> there are significant policy questions. get to the campaign in a second. huge policy questions when the vice president says we did not know, jay carney says it was a personal we, the president and vice president, did not know. what the romney campaign says this is a pattern. they say whenever there's something damaging in the administration, the white house washes its hands and says somewhere in the bureaucracy someone else is responsible for that and say the president of the united states is in charge of that bureaucracy, he should take responsibility for it. wants answers democrats and republicans as to why the security requests didn't make their way up the food chain fast enough, governor romney thinks, wolf, this is an opening to question the president's leadership and his management. that he's in charge of the enterprise, therefore he's responsible and has he led properly? has he asked the right questions
when you have a dicey situation like libya? we'll see how that plays out. and the third debate is on security issues. >> yeah, national security, foreign policy, the whole thing is going to be on that. this is the 11th anniversary of 9/11. there had been significant threats in benghazi against the united states ambassador and other americans. you know on the anniversary of 9/11 something might happen. but they really didn't take steps to beef up security in advance. and that's a key unanswered question right now. >> they didn't take the right steps and after this horrible tragic event happened the ambassadors and others being killed, the story didn't match up. they changed it the next day and the day after that and in some ways they're changing it now. we do live television and breaking news situations often almost always what is first said is not exactly right in the end. but the administration is going to have to piece this together, a, for its own documentation, b, for -- >> is it your sense -- we
watched the debate together, biden said he didn't know the state department officials testified that week under oath or saying nobody brought this to our attention as president and vice president? >> we can't read minds but the one thing you know from covering politics, he made an immediate pivot. when martha raddatz answer asked that question, he criticized mitt romney's position on iraq. the question was about benghazi and attacks in libya and he immediately questioned mitt romney's foreign policy credentials. in politics when you get a question you don't like and don't want to answer, you pivot. >> and is the whole notion of throwing the intelligence community under the bus saying that's what they were telling us, we were only reporting what they were telling us, which is awkward for a vice president to do that. >> it's awkward for anybody. if you talk to people in the intelligence community and now at the state department, they're not han pi. they're not happy. the leadershipers of the administration in their view, jay carney speaks for the
president, the vice president on stage last night essentially publicly scolding, publicly blaming others for what happened in the administration. those people don't like that. wolf, you've been in washington a long time. there's a history of this. if you go back during the whole saddam hussein, weapons of mass destruction, what happened in the intelligence breakdown. when any official in the government publicly criticizes the intelligence community in a way like that, you tend over the next two, three, four, five, six months not so nice stories about you. >> what's your biggest takeaway from last night? >> both bases seem energized. liberals are ecstatic because they thought the president was essentially absent in the first debate. conservatives equally happy. closer to the election, part is natural anyway, but the performance of both number twos last night added more energy in a highly competitive election. we're going into crunch time. >> big time indeed. mitt romney and paul ryan are appearing this hour together in a critical battleground state. we're talking about ohio.
guess what? we're going there live. we'll take you there live. and as the death toll grows from a meningitis outbreak tied to tainted medications, cnn is now learning this is not, repeat not, the first time the company in question has been linked to a deadly infection. [ male announcer ] with 160 more miles per tank, the distances aren't getting shorter.
there are now 184 reported cases and 12 states being affected by the horrific meningitis outbreak here in the united states. this comes as what's believed to be the first lawsuit has been filed against the massachusetts facility behind the scare. now, with at least 14 people dead, cnn is learning this isn't the first time the company has been linked to a deadly infection. our brian todd has the story. >> reporter: cnn has learned the fatalities linked to the current meningitis outbreak are not the first deaths alleged to be caused by drugs made by the new england compounding center. ten years ago a man from upstate new york named william koch got
an injection of a steroid according to documents from a lawsuit filed by his family, documents cnn has obtained. the complaint says the drug was made by necc, which is identified in the papers as new england compounding pharmacy. the suit, seeking $2.5 million from the company, says the drug he received was contaminated. that he got bacterial meningitis from it and he died from it. koch passed away in february of 2004. the suit was later settled outside of court. we do not know if the congressmen admitted wrong doing. still, some experts have questions about necc's practices. >> it raises issues with their quality systems. >> reporter: this man is an expert on the compounding drugs and manufacture of them at the university of maryland compounding pharmacy. he says compounding pharmacies are traditionally supposed to work with doctors to make specific drugs for individual patients. but some compounding facilities like necc crossed over. >> you can obviously see when they're doing tens of thousands of units that they've crossed
over from an individual prescription, an individual pharmacist and patient to manufacturing where they're distributing that widely to all these different states. >> reporter: at that point he says those facilities are supposed to be regulated by the fda. but necc never got federal approval to manufacture those drugs. that provokes some important questions. after william koch's death, couldn't regulators have stepped in, investigated necc and shut it down at least temporarily? if regulators had done that, could the deaths in the current meningitis outbreak including at least one here in maryland have been prevented? the fda doesn't have jurisdiction over compounding pharmacies until there's a problem. fda officials say they've been fighting to change that. an official with the health department of massachusetts where necc is based tells us that after complaints about injections received on the same day koch got his shot, the state health department and the fda did a joint investigation of necc. it's not clear if those agencies were made aware of koch's
specific case. they didn't shut down the company. but the official says after an investigation of more than three years they gave necc a list of several things it needed to fix, put the company on probation for a year, but suspended that probation he says because the company did fix the problems. in his view it never should have gotten that far. could it all have been prevented? >> i feel that they should have stuck to their original business of compounding. and they should have not crossed the line. >> we couldn't get an necc representative to comment directly on that. asked about the koch case, the company declined to comment citing confidentiality provisions, wolf. >> congress is now looking into all this? >> that's right. the house energy and commerce committee wants briefings from the cdc, fda and massachusetts department of health. they want to know more about that investigation that those two agencies undertook of that company. they want to know more about what the company did in the wake of it. congress now getting involved in this and tracing the pathology of this whole thing. >> i hope they do a thorough,
thorough job. everyone who's investigating, so we learn from this so it doesn't happen again. >> right. absolutely. >> thanks very much. if you thought last night's vice presidential debate was fiery, you haven't seen anything yet. just ahead, you're going to go see a political debate that got so nasty, yes, so nasty law enforcement had to step in. of the most highly recommended bed in america -- the tempur-pedic ergo system. treat yourself to the ultimate sleep experience and save up to $400 during the tempur ergo savings event. plus, visit tempurpedic.com for full details
an explosion levels a home in colorado. lisa sylvester's monitoring that, some of the other top stories in "the situation room" right now. what happened, lisa? >> hi, wolf. a woman and four children were reportedly watching tv in the same room when that house exploded. the children were able to crawl out of the house. firefighters were able to get the mother out.
amazingly though they did not have any life threatening injuries. authorities say it was caused by natural gas. neighbors reported smelling it before that blast. and as you saw last night heated political debates are nothing new, but this one almost got physical in california. they got into a heated exchange over the correct author of the immigration legislation known as the dream act. now, at one point two men stood nose-to-nose. law enforcement stepped in afterward. the debate continued without incident. and more fallout from the lance armstrong doping scandal. the international olympic committee is considering whether to strip the cyclist of his bronze medal from the 2000 sydney games. the ioc says it's reviewing evidence by the u.s. anti-doping agency which accuses armstrong of being at the center of a sophisticated doping scheme. armstrong has long denied these allegations. and this next story is no laughing matter. a florida man is trying now to
figure out what to do with all of these clowns. richard levine inherited the 13,000-piece clown collection when his father-in-law died two years ago. he plans to sell some of the items and use the money to open a museum. he also wants to follow in the family's big red shoes and -- no surprise here, he wants to become a clown. someone suggested, wolf, maybe donate some of them to maybe a children's hospital. so lots of neat ideas of what to do when you have the problem of 13,000 clowns. >> that could make a lot of young kids pretty happy to see all those clowns. it's a good idea. they should take advantage. >> i think so too, wolf. lisa, thanks very much. it was paul ryan's low point in the debate. his comments about a subject close to his heart fell flat with our group of undecided voters who were watching in virginia. we're taking a closer look. that's coming up in our strategy session. ♪
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let's go back to last night's vice presidential debate. one of the moments where passioned flared was the heated exchange over medicare. subject close to so many people's hearts. joe biden said the republican plan to partially privatize medicare would raise costs for seniors. paul ryan took sharp exception to that. cnn's tom foreman has a reality check. >> hey, wolf. as you know, medicare is a government health insurance program mostly for people over the age of 65. and 50 million americans rely on this and it's long-term financial health is not very promising right now. here's a really scary part though. each campaign says the other side's plans for dealing with that are terrible. >> obama care takes $716 billion from medicare to spend on obama care. >> all you seniors out there, have you been denied choices? have you lost medicare
advantage? >> because they haven't put a credible solution on the table. >> their ideas are old. and their ideas are bad. and they eliminate the guarantee of medicare. >> this is their essential claim that my opponent will destroy medicare. but is that really true? let's take a look at some of the facts and consider it. i'll bring in some tools here and look at the white house plan to begin with. this is the landscape they're dealing with. the cost of medicare is going to generally increase over the next ten years until it reaches about $1 trillion annually. they want to reduce that by about 10%. that's the orange part here. that's the part they're cutting out. now, their opponents look at that and say that's real care for real people that you're getting rid of and you just can't do that. but the white house says hold on, no it's not. that's a reduction in the amount of money that we're paying to the administrative cost of hospitals and to insurance programs. in a word they say that is waste. we can get rid of it. and we should get rid of it.
that's the white house take on things. now, if you bring in the romney/ryan plan, they have the same increase. they also want to reduce it by about 10%. but they want to rely on the private sector, not government, to get that done. in a word, they're going for vouchers. now, they don't like calling it vouchers, but that's really what it is. right now, if you're on medicare, what happens is the government pays medicare, medicare pays the hospital, the hospital takes care of you. under this plan the government would pay you and you would decide if you wanted to buy into medicare or into private insurance that will create competition between the two in their theory. and that is how you get at that very same waste that the white house wants to get out. these are two very complicated huge programs. there are critics on both sides who say this plan won't work or that plan won't work or this plan will leave people stranded or that plan will leave people stranded. but the truth is it is complicated. it's hard to deal with all of that.
so if go to this basic claim that both sides have raised that somehow this is all about destroying medicare, that is simply false. that is a scare tactic no matter which side is saying it. so why are they saying it so much? all you have to do is look at the map and you know. across the country the baby boomers are getting older. they're becoming a bigger percentage of the voting population, fast. all those dark states is where the percentage is highest. look at florida here. battleground state, more than 17% the population there is over the age of 65. these are engaged voters. they are voters who show up when it's time to vote. and they're very concerned about medicare. even though both sides say neither plan is going to affect people over the age of 65 right now. they're engaged on this issue. and whichever side wins the medicare debate will probably win a lot of senior votes. >> good point, tom foreman. thanks very much. there's a criminal investigation into a republican
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this week's protest in greece underscored the fact that the european union is facing the worst crisis since it was founded. devastating debt, violent disruption and possible integration. they got a huge boost in the form of the nobel peace prize. the chairman of the nobel committee calls it a message that europe must do everything it can to move forward. and john than manen is joining us from the cnn center. he's been covering this for years. i was pretty surprised in 2009
when president obama won the nobel peace prize. and i was pretty surprised today with the eu winning the nobel peace prize. were you surprised? >> you know, i was really moved. and i'll tell you why, wolf. you know your history. and you're very well traveled. for anyone who's been to western europe and walked through the battlefields or seen the military cemeteries where millions of young men lost their lives and lie there still to this day, europe was a slaughter house for centuries. people take peace there for granted. and one of the reasons they're able today to take peace for granted is because of the ambition, the ideal of unified europe, unified by what we know today as the european union. it has succeeded. it has worked. europe is at peace. it's not an accident. and the nobel committee recognized that enormous achievement with the peace prize. >> who is on this nobel committee? and how do they make their
decision? >> there are five people on the committee. they're all norwegians. they are chosen by the norwegian parliament. they tend to be people in public life, retired figures. the former prime minister is in fact the chairman of the committee. and they make their decisions essentially by consensus. there's a lovely old school quality to it. they receive nominations by mail every year. this year they got 231. and they mull them over. and they have researchers look into the most serious ones. they are themselves entitled to add their own nominations. but at a certain point they just start talking and voting. they try and reach consensus. this year's decision as in many years was said to have been unanimous. >> there are a lot of people who think that the committee is becoming too political, shall we say the critics, what do you think? >> you know, is peace political? is war political? fundamentally when you're talking about recognizing the work of people who are trying to advance the cause of peace, you're inevitably going to be talking about people who are trying to resolve disputes, who are addressing disputes who are
are sometimes taking sides in disputes. so the whole project laid out in alfred nobel's will recognizing people who have done the most for the work of peace worldwide, it's inevitably political. it was this year. and they're saluting the politics of peace as really exemplified by the european union, 500 million people living together in peace in a place that was for centuries the scene of unspeakable carnage. >> there have been some controversial nobel peace prize winners over the years. does the nobel peace prize still this day make a real difference? >> you know, the most eloquent answer would come from the nobel peace prize laureate two years ago. he couldn't receive his prize because he's behind bars. he was then, he is now. i don't know that it's contributed enormously to his cause. maybe some day we'll find out that it helped keep him alive. i can tell you that aun san su chi able to visit the united
states this year said she was heartened when she heard about the prize because it meant even in house arrest the world had not forgotten about her. maybe that's the most the nobel can do. it can show the world and it can show brave people who are making a difference for the world that the rest of us haven't forgotten about them. we salute their achievement and honor their effort if it's ongoing. that's worthy. that's something. >> jonathan mann, as usual, thanks very much. we're awaiting right now to hear from mitt romney and paul ryan. they're about to speak at a rally in ohio. when it happens, we'll go there live. we'll be right back.
i'm barack obama, and i approve this message. "i'm not in favor of a $5 trillion tax cut. that's not my plan." mitchell: "the nonpartisan tax policy center concluded that mitt romney's tax plan would cost $4.8 trillion over 10 years." vo: why won't romney level with us about his tax plan, which gives the wealthy huge new tax breaks? because according to experts, he'd have to raise taxes on the middle class - or increase the deficit to pay for it. if we can't trust him here... how could we ever trust him here?
strategy session. joining us now two cnn contributors, the democratic strategist maria cardona and former bush speech writer david frum. thanks very much for coming in. we had a focus group, undecided voters watching in virginia at the debate last night. and the low point for paul ryan happened when he was talking about abortion. let me play this. >> we don't think that unelected judges should make this decision that people through their elected representatives and reaching a consensus in society through the democratic process should make this determination. >> that was the low point for him. and among those focus groups in the dial test today @barack obama the twitter site tweeted low point happened near the end of the debate when he was asked about abortion. i was referring to that focus group. how much of a problem is the difference between the democratic ticket and the
republican ticket with female voters out there when it comes to the issue of abortion? >> well, you know, women are more pro-life than men. that is something we do tend to forget. republicans have a problem with women voters not because of the abortion issue but because republicans are too individualistic on economics. they're not supportive enough of some kind of government safety network. that's the thing republicans have to reassure women about. if they do, they can certainly survive being a pro-choice or a pro-life party with a sex that is more pro-life than men are. paul ryan's problem was he kept biting at issues like that. that is the core challenge of the republicans in this campaign. talk about jobs and income growth. don't talk about anything else. the democratic goal is to get you to talk about other things. don't cooperate. >> because the obama/biden campaign thinks this is a winning issue for them. >> absolutely. and i agree with them. i think the problem with the republicans is even though lots of women are pro-life, i don't think that they want to see nor
do the majority of the american people want to see abortion rights taken away. and that is the problem. because the romney/ryan ticket has really opened the door to that. and you also mentioned something which i think has been a huge dichotomy between what the republicans say individual freedom, individual freedom is a sacred tenant in the republican party except i guess when it comes to women voters because they actually want to be able to decide for women what to do with their bodies. and that really turns women off. >> you heard biden say something -- a lot of things that the president didn't say in his first debate, but he also mentioned the supreme court and pointed out maybe one or two justices could be nominated by the next president over the next four years. >> biden's goal in this debate unlike the president did arrive with a plan for the debate. i think the president was trying to catch up on rest. biden's plan was talk about anything except jobs and income growth. talk about medicare. talk about medicaid. talk about the supreme court. anything. because even when you're on the wrong side of public opinion, you're in less trouble on the
wrong side of public opinion on those issues than you are on the core issue of this election, which is where's the plan to create jobs? >> they both wanted to talk about their roots, middle class roots or whatever. listen to this. >> talking about places i grew up in, my neighbors in scranton and claymont. >> joe and i are from similar towns. he's from scranton, pennsylvania. i'm from jamesville, wisconsin. >> these people are my mom and dad, the people i grew up with, my neighbors, they pay more effective tax than governor romney pays in his federal income tax. >> one of my best friends in jamesville, reservist, is at a forward operating base in eastern afghanistan right now. >> they're obviously trying to play up their middle class roots, their real people if you will. who got the better? >> i actually think it was joe biden although i will say paul ryan was right in talking up his middle class roots because that is still an area where the romney/ryan ticket is wanting. and it is clearly a focus.
i actually think at the end of the day this election will be decided on which ticket convinces american voters who is going to be the best fighter for middle class families. and i think throughout the debate paul ryan really had an issue in talking about the specifics of a plan that would help the middle class, specifically his economic plan. >> you think american voters really care about their roots whether in scranton or jamesville, wisconsin. >> i think everything counts. i think joe biden proved something else. joe biden used the words, the phrase, middle class three times as often. yes, i did count. he didn't often have anything to say, he just said the phrase middle class, mid l class, middle class. because he had taken note of debating lesson, the thing you say is the thing people think you talk about. the republicans should have come to that stage and said the word jobs, jobs, jobs. income growth, income growth, income growth. medicare, abortion, all distractions. this election's about jobs and income growth.
>> well, medicare's a pretty important issue. >> it's an important issue that the republican answer to that should be -- and i was not an advocate or putting paul ryan on the ticket because you join a distraction. the republican answer should be medicare is a pressing problem. and once the economy returns to normal, it must be solved. there will be plenty of time after the election of 2016 to deal with that problem. today's crisis is putting people back to work, getting the economy moving again. don't let the obama administration off the hook for its failure to do that. >> maria, i was curious on this because i was paying close attention like all of you were how they addressed each other during the course of the debate. we put together this clip. >> my friend, my friend. >> joe and i are from similar towns. >> i love my friend here. >> i appreciate that, joe. >> my friend. >> joe, this taxes a million people. >> let me tell you what my friend said. my friend. what would my friend do differently? my friends, i just fundamentally disagree with my friend.
>> i want to thank you, joe. >> now, was that appropriate for the congressman to call the sitting vice president of the united states joe? >> i actually don't think that's a big deal. i mean, sarah palin asked if she could call him joe and joe said yes. i don't think that's a big deal. i think what that demonstrated is that in fact paul ryan is probably not joe biden's friend. but going back to something that my friend david frum said is that joe biden kept talking about the middle class, but it was because he was able to connect the dots about what the obama's policies have been and will be to expand the middle class. and that's a lot of what the middle class wants to hear and didn't hear from ryan last night. >> let's ask our friend. is it appropriate for the congressman to call the vice president joe? or mr. vice president? >> i would recommend mr. vice president. i would also recommend the vice president to refer to a member of congress and vice presidential nominee as congressman. his use of the word my friend reminded me of something they say in university common rooms, that when the discussion begins
to get ugly, the professors begin to address each other as professor. and so there was something dismissive, condescending and insulting about the way vice president biden referred to congressman ryan. it's not surprising that congressman ryan didn't repay respect where he was not getting respect. >> yeah. maybe i'm old school, but mr. vice president, congressman, that's the way i would go. >> i agree. but i don't think it was a big deal. i think the policies were more what voters were looking at. >> guys, thanks very much. >> thank you. >> thank you, wolf. president obama and mitt romney running neck and neck in some critical battleground states right now including new polls just coming in from florida and from new hampshire. the latest arg poll of likely voters shows mitt romney at 49% and president obama at 46%. that's in florida right now. that's within the sampling error. meanwhile, with just 25 days to go before election day there are some serious concerns about a republican financed voter
registration effort in the state. cnn's crime and justice correspondent joe johns is joining us now with the latest on a criminal investigation making waves right here in washington. joe, what's going on? >> wolf, he is a veteran gop operative who just doesn't seem to go away. a few weeks agoaway. a few weeks ago, a wave of bad publicity hit the waves. he was disavowed by the republican national committee. tonight, some democrats that criticize his tactics say they're worried he may still be operating in several key battleground states under a different company name. >> it all started with nathan sprule. they came under fire for providing false information at the supervisor of election office. they responded by throwing him under the bus even though he
denies wrong doing. by that time the republican party had given him $3 million for voter registration efforts, but they publicly announced they were severing ties with him. now the top democrat on the house government and oversight committee is asking questions. >> we want to look at the various contracts. i want to see the contracts that he has with these various entities and what he is contracted to do. >> if the biggest question is who is paying, the republican party is parently not. contacted today, shawn spicer said they're not doing business with sprule or any of his companies. democrats pointed to the american crossroads political organization that promised to spend millions to help republicans win elections, but american crossroads told cnn that it hired one of sprules companies in 2010 for door to
door outreach. sprule's lawyer did not our calls. congressman cummings asked him to sit for a questioning and information. but he denied in this letter that says he wants to keep it outside of the realm of politics and that he is cooperating in their investigation of irregularities there. >> it was very upsetting to me and to the members of our committee on the democratic side. and we're very upset about it. >> why? >> it's very unusual for us to have someone we are investigating to say i am not going to cooperate with you, i'll not going to provide documents, i will not appear. >> he has talked to fox news where he defended his company's
voter registration efforts. >> what they will find is that our company had an effort of quality control. when we found them, we fired them immediately, and we have a long paper trail. and those cheating the system were fired and turned over for prosecution. >> democrats have complained about sproul for awhile. joe, thanks very much, and joe has an excellent new documentary calls "voters in america, who counts." we're standing by to hear both of the republican presidential and vice presidential candidates getting ready to address a rally right now. we will be anxious to hear what they say.
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and london, a girl flips for the fall weather in a park. and a sheep is spotted. those are pictures coming in from around the world. psy is already a international sensation, now his youtube hit is also taking the word of sports by storm. from a tennis court in china to a baseball field? washington dc. >> by now, you've watched it, sang the style, or done the dance. >> the style is noble at daytime, and crazy at night. >> the music video by psy has become a worldwide hit. now the song and dance are making their way into the world of sports. last week, tennis star djokovic
busted a move in beijing to celebrate his win. baseball fans in the u.s. had a good laugh as the washington nationals team mascots strutted their stuff. it was among the most viewed race. >> and after scoring against parma, there was the dance, and then there is the oregon duck. the duck is a hit on youtube too with more than 5 million views. but while everyone knows his song, the korean pop star says he's still trying to get people to remember his name. >> the video is much more popular. so if people say hey, i'm psy, and they're like what's psy, and
i say gangnam style -- and then i say like the youtube video. in the meantime, sports, players, and mascots are dancing to the anthem. happening now, both campaigns insist it's victory for their side. but one issue from the debate is forcing the white house to step in. he is the presidential candidate you probably never heard of, and he could sway the vote in a key swing state. plus, proof that sooner or later you'll see everything on the streets of los angeles. i'm wolf blitzer, you're in the situation room. >> we begin this hour with the growing shadow on the democrats celebration of what they see as vice president joe bidens
victory in the debate. last night the vice president said, quote, we weren't told there was not enough security at the embassy in benghazi. and it's dominated the conversation for much of today. our white house correspondent is joining us now with the latest. >> republicans sense an opportunity here to go after the president and vice president on foreign policy. they're pushing a narrative that the administration dropped the ball in benghazi. now were more tough questions about who knew what here at the white house. >> hello, wisconsin. >> campaigning in la crosse, wisconsin, vice president joe biden was not the friendliest neighbor. >> i hardly agree with anything he says. >> joined by jill biden, he picked up where he left off on
thursday's debate. but the white house is busy trying to clean up this debate exchange of what administration new about security needs in libya. >> we weren't told they want more security. >> congressional testimony this week reveal as request was made and denied by the state department that launched it's on review into all aspects of the deadly attack. >> we do not have a complete picture or all of the answers. no one in this administration has ever claimed other side. but republican -- >> mitt romney seized on the vice president's response to level a new charge. >> the vice president directly contradicted the sworn testimony of state department officials. he is doubling down on denial. >> facing a political backlash, jay carney tried to school
reporters on what the vice president meant by the word we. >> he was speaking about himself, the president, and not the administration. >> reporter: the vice president's answer could have left the impression that no one at the administration was told of the security question. >> he could have been more specific and said he was not aware that the testimony shows the administration did not know about it. >> again, the vice president was aware of the testimony on the hill. everyone in this room, including people who pretend otherwise were aware of testimony. >> now in continuing to defend the white house, spokesman jay carney says in four plus hours of testimony, there was no mention at all of a question for security made to the white house and to the president himself. >> do but know how much time between now and tuesday night he
will practice and get ready for debate 2000 two? >> he will be going to williamsburg for three days to do what we call the debate boot camp. we don't know a lot of specifics because the white house and the campaign has been very tight-lipped about how they go through that boot camp. but we do know that the president, coming out on the other end, is expected to be much tougher than in the first round. >> the press secretary for the obama campaign told me earlier that john kerry, the senator from massachusetts will continue to play mitt romney in those boot camp debate rehearsals as they say. all right, dan, thanks very much. let's get to the republican ticket right now, you might say that mitt romney is riding paul ryan's coat tails. they're in ohio, a must win swing state. jim acosta is on the scene for us. >> reporter: that's right,
machinery and paul ryan will be out here in the town square in just a few moments, they reunited about an hour ago at the columbus airport, and according to reporters that witnessed this, they exchanged a bro hug, and he said way to go. even though paul ryan says he didn't see it coming, i talked to a lot of strategists last night who say they were not expecting joe bidens repeated interjections and laugh out loud performance he delivered, but the debate has not just been about style, it has been about substan substance, and most notably, the subject of libya. >> at breakfast, paul ryan still had his sunny side up. >> no, it's what i expected. >> ryan offered no complaints
about bidens aggressive performance which appeared to be designed to put sorely needed points on the president's score board. whether it was on his pass request for stimulus money. >> on two situations with advocated for constituents applying for grants. >> or his attempt to compare it to jack kennedys. >> now you're jack ken did? >> ryan was able to fire back with a few zingers of his own. >> mr. vice president, i know you're under a lot of duress to make up for the lost round -- >> i think the vice president very well knows that sometimes the words don't come out of your mouth the right way -- >> republicans in the post debate spin room tried to make the case that biden failed not only on style. >> i was embarrassed for the vice president. the laughs, we counted 82 times that joe biden interrupted paul ryan.
>> but also on substance, declaring victory for his running mate. >> because the vice president directly contradicted the sworn testimony of state department officials. he is doebling doubling down on. >> back in the spin room, they said it was ryan who was unprepared. >> he got past ryan's talking cards and points. >> reporter: now after their event this evening, they will be splitting up and cris crossing various points of ohio, and after that, mitt romney will be going into debate prep, wolf, he has been campaigning sign by side with rob portman
continuously over the last several days. you bet they were doing more than just rallied, wolf, i suspect they were doing a little debate prep on the side as well. >> i'm sure, jim, thank you very much pch john now by ron brownstein. they said they don't want a lot of bounce. >> they have not had a bigot impact on the race. -- so, but you know, i think this debate was kind of interesting and potentially important for both sides. certainly democrats needed something to give them a sense of renewed momentum and energy, and paul ryan i thought held his own, bideen did well, and ryan held his own as well. he was much more confident to
me. he looked shaky there at the beginning. they also have the impact, i think, of tabling issues we may hear more about. >> they both energized their bases and turn out. the polls have shown a tightening since the first debate and they're still tight. >> i think the first debate changed the race in a fundamental way. >> enough to call it a game changer. >> it doesn't mean that romney is going to win the race. >> i think a very specific reason. president obama had a kind of margin of comfort in this race. based on voter who is are somewhat dissatisfied with him over the first term, but simply did not view machinery has a viable alternative, they doubted that he understood or cared about the lives of other people. that changed the debate for a significant portion of those voters, romney is now a viable alternative, i don't the obama
can put the genie back in the bottom. and now we are slugging it out in a races that is more about fundamentals. and a real question about who can current out their voters. >> i want you to listen to what romney and biden have been saying today addressing specific constituents. >> i know the president is pleased to see us reduce our military spending. i want to make sure but continue to spend for a military second to none in the world. >> it was made clear last night they don't believe in protecting a woman's access to health care. it was made very clear they do not believe a woman has a right to control her on body. >> what's going on here as far as demographics? >> that was one of the important things last night. they want to reduce abortion except for in the case of rain and incest -- >> you didn't just say reduce,
he said eliminate. >> exactly right. >> and the democrats are depending on a big gender gap in this race. nationally, they're running best among college, white women with a college education, and in the battleground states, they're doing better than they are nationally than among blue collar white women. the access to contraception that came up also last night is an important part to their argument. for romney, he is looking for that military spending appeals to a woulder white audience. the irony in all of this is that it was never intended to go into effect. the goal was to pressure both sides. and now we're in the same situation. >> so you know when you use sequester -- >> big automatic spending cuts strigers last year by part of the debt ceiling deal as a way
to make a big budget agreement which they failed to do despite having a super committee. and one of the big questions after 2013 is whether either president obama or mitt romney will be in a position to make an agreement. >> rock the red. >> joe biden and paul ryan aren't the only people under the microscope following the vice presidential debate. there's a third person on the stage, how did the debate moderator do? and live pictures right now of the shuttle endeavor, on it's last, very very slow voyage.ce ] how do you measure happiness? by the armful? by the barrelful? the carful? how about...by the bowlful? campbell's soups give you nutrition, energy, and can help you keep a healthy weight. campbell's. it's amazing what soup can do.
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now the reviews are pouring in for last night's debate moderator. here is a quick look at how she managed the candidates. >> wasn't this a massive intelligence failure? >> their closer to being able to get enough material to put in a weapon if they had a weapon. >> you're acting like they don't -- >> where are the five million green jobs -- >> i want to move on here, i think we have gone over this enough. >> do you have the specifics or are you still working on it and that's why you won't tell voters? >> no specifics. >> i hopely get equal time. >> you'll get a few minutes here, a few seconds, really. >> let's bring in howard curtz, and lauren ashburn.
thank you very much for coming in. what kind of reviews is she getting for this? >> journalist and pundits are praising her performance because she had tight control and she had good follow ups. she followed up knowledgeably and pushed for specifics. >> did you think she did a good job? >> i did. >> what does a woman bring that a man, for example wouldn't bring. >> in the end, if you look at how she asked them to answer a question, and answer it personally, and all of a sudden you saw the decible level go down. >> she did it in a way by pointing out that both men are
catholics. >> i think that that faith question, a lot of people criticized her for that. i think it was oprah-esque. isn't oprah the richest and most powerful broadcaster -- >> i department think much of about her being a woman when i watched it, i thought of her being a correspondent and not an anchor. she was able to say i have talked to military officials about this and they question pulling out the troops in afghanistan. so i think having a reporter was an interesting choice because of her experience in the field. >> she is a real kick-butt reporter, and we all know that and agree, but i also think she brings something to the table. in 2008, i think, there were no female moderators, none, and now
we only have one female moderator for the presidential debate. i think we have proveen that she has helped our cause that women can really do this. >> not everyone is praising her. eric ericson, he was on starting point here on cnn earlier today with soledad o'brien. >> i think if you're a journalist, and i thought she was horrible. >> horrible. >> a lot of people on my facebook page and twitter said the same thing to me, that she was debating not only joe biden, but paul ryan was debating her. i can see how some people would have, because she didn't interrupt joe biden or paul
ryan. >> is this breaking down conservative liberal lines? is that what's happening? >> this is a case of some people on the right. blaming the refs, saying that biden could dominate it because she could not reign him in. i think just as after the obama and romney debate welcome some democrats were not happy with jim lehrer. >> to answer your question, yes. we're blaming the moderator like we blame the polls. >> a lot more on sunday morning, 11:00 a.m., eastern. and i'm not lying. >> i can validate what you're saying. >> a presidential candidate you probably never heard of could have a big impact in one swing
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get back to the race for the white house in a moment, other stories we're following including new developments in the case of a missing 10 year girl in colorado. >> this is a sad development, just a short time ago, authorities announced a dismembered body found wednesday night in a park has been identified as jessica ridgeway. authorities are not releasing
any more details as that search for a suspect. she disappeared a week ago as she was walking to school. her backpack and water potle was found about six miles from home. and 14 more counts of murder charges against james holmes. that is on top of more than 100 other charges he faces. he is accused of killing 12 people and injurying 58 others in july. and thousands of supporters and opponents of egypt's new president clashed today. they shouted and threw stones. more than 100 people were injured. it was over the acquittal of a
loyaltyist that ousted his leader, and look what watched up, an eyeball. they put it on ice so they can try to track where it came from. marine biologist believe it might belong to a giant squid or a whale. >> right now, mitt romney is addressing a rally, let's watch. >> metaphorically he stood up and went through all of the things he would do to get this economy going. it's our job to get it going for the middle class and more take home pay, and we're going to put in place that plan. now, i also had a debate about a week ago, and that -- [ cheers and applause ] .
i enjoyed that experience, we got to talk about differences between us. i got to ask questions like why, with 23 million americans out of work when he took office, struggling to find work, why instead of focussing on getting them jobs, he focused on obama care, and questions like with gasoline so expensive, why it was that he cut in half the number of permits for drilling on federal lands and in federal waters. i got to ask why what he called the massive deficit we have un-american, and the deficit spending has been just outrageous under republicans and democrats. why, when that was the case, he spent $90 billion sending money to green energy companies owned by friends and contributors of his. and we heard what he had to say
or not say. i think we boil it down to this, he said more recently look, you can't change washington from the inside, you have to change it from the outside, we're going to give him that chance on november 6th. [ cheers and applause ] now, there were a couple places where we agreed. we agreed that we would take this country in very different directions. he points out that, actually it was the vice president that blurted out the truth, that they're planning on raising taxes by a trillion, but it's more like 2 trillion with the obama care taxes. there's no question that their spending and interest on the debt they amassed will do what one recent study showed and and that is cause them to raise taxes on the middle class. and i make this commitment to you, under no circumstances will i raise taxes on the middle
class of america. [ cheers and applause ] >> under his path, we'll have obama care installed, and that means the bureaucrats get to tell you what kind of treatments you can have, and it means your health insurance premiums will be $2500 more expensive. he tells you all of these free things you're getting with obama care, but they come with a $2500 extra charge. what i'm going to do is repeal obama care and replace it with something that works for the american people. [ cheers and applause ] >> and i hope you listen carefully because the president is pointing out that that they are cutting $716 billion from medicare from current beneficiaries.
were putting that money back and we're going to honor the promise we made to our senior. and one thing other thing, they said they will cut the military by hundreds of billions -- in additioning with there was that sequester idea the white house had to cut another several hundred billion, they'll cut about a trillion from the military. the secretary of defense said those cuts would be devastating to america, our military, to our national security. ly not make those cuts,ly not cut our military, i'll keep it second to none in the world. and when it game to jobs, both last night with vice president bi biden and me debate, they didn't have a plan for creating jobs for middle income americans. they say they care, and i believe they care, they just don't know what to do.
they say they're going to have another stimulus, how did the last one work out? and then they're planning on hiring more government workers, and they have plans to make investments they say, they don't want to pick win everies and losers, they just pick losers, and then they want to raise taxes. i don't think anyone believes raising taxes creates more jobs. they just don't understand what it takes to get this economy going, and we have a plan, five key elements, and paul spoke about them last night. number one, we're taking full advantage of our oil, coal, natural gas, our nuclear, our renewables. we're going to take advantage of our energy. and that will protect and grow energy jobs and also manufacturing. there are a lot of manufacturing jobs including in the glass
industry that use a lot of energy. and when energy is less expensive, jobs come back here. under president obama we lost 600,000 manufacturing jobs. we want to bring jobs back home to america. that's number one. number two, we will make trade work for us. we're going to open up new markets for goods, but if people cheat like china has cheated, we're going to stop it. >> all right, mitt romney delivering his five point proposal that he often delivers out there on the campaign trail. we'll continue to monitor what he is saying. he is out there in ohio with paul ryan who was part of that debate last night. up next, a high profile mitt romney supporter to weigh in. he's asking some of the sharpest questions about what obama administration new about the benghazi attack. up the ante. and if you stumble, you get back up. up isn't easy, and we ought to know.
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all right, this just coming into the situation room, another investigation of what happened on the 1 19 anniversary of 9/11. now it has been announced that the homeland security and governmental affairs committee will conduct what they call a bipartisan inquiry into the circumstances before, during, and after the attack on the concentrate late in benghazi. the attack that killed the ambassador of libya and three other americans. let's talk about what going on right now with jason chaffetz. they hold their own hearing this week. congressman, thanks for coming in. you have a problem with the senate beginning it's on inquiry, do you? >> no, i applaud it, i think it needs to be investigating because there's more unanswered questions than when we started. >> the ranking democrat, ranking member of the house intelligence committee, now says that you and
your republicans on your committee released sensitive classified information. "sentive and potentially classified information was passed around and discussed openly in the hearing room without the prop security review. it is of great concern when classified information is exposed, it puts americans around the world at risk." a very serious charge levelled against the chairman of your committee, and you, one of the chairman of a sub committee, what do you want to say to them? >> i'm ready to go through it document by document if there is something specific, but we were a tra sentive about this. the documents that we did enter into the congressional record, right at the very top in bold green letters, said unclassified. so i think they're fair game, part of getting to the answers
and part of what we should do. >> you're open to an investigation of whether or not inadvertently you released sensitive classified information to the world as a result of what you did. you're open to that investigation? >> look, when there was a map put up, i'm the one that called the point of order, i thought the state department was released stuff that i was told previously should not be revealed. skied for a point of order and the chairman ruled in my favor. we were very, very careful. it is very sensitive, but if the congressman has a specific concern, point to a specific, don't just make a sweeping generalization. make a specific request, make a case, and i'm happy to show him the do you me the documents. >> and if you did screw up, what should happen? >> i don't think we did, but get to specifics and i'm happy to do that. there's a bigger, broader problem here. the white house continues to fail to be candid with the american people.
and they're still bundling these answers. >> you saw vice president bideen last night say it's hypocritical for you and other members of your committee including for the republican vice presidential nominee to be making these accusations since you voted to cut funding for u.s. diplomatic security. listen to jay carney, the white house press secretary today. >> i find it rich that charges are made about concern over diplomatic security by those that routinely slash funding in order to pay for tax cuts. >> did you vote to cut diplom diplomatic security? >> over the last five years, the state department has grown by nearly 100%, so no. we asked directly, was the
denial for more security personnel in libya a consequence of a lack of funding? and she said no, sir. so they're trying to get you off track. just the fact that you're asking this question. it wasn't a funding issue. president obama has 6,000 private contractors involved in security in iraq, and if you look at libya, you a handful of them, it's about prioritizing. >> the argument that you heard is under across the board cuts that you supported there would have been a $300 billion cut in diplomatic security. you voted in favor of that as did paul ryan. >> and when the state department was asked if it was a factor, she said no. when you have libya, 9/11, you had two bombings at our concentrate late in benghazi, an assassination attempt on the british ambassador, 230 security
interests, and you're graping whether or not to have two or three individuals there involved in security, you're missing the big point. the point is there was intelligence coming baa to the white house, to the state department over a long period of time. you have social security experts on the ground, begging and asking for more, and it was not just denied, it was reduced. it has not to do with some vote in some committee a couple years ago, and the state department testified to that fact. >> jason chaffetz, thank you for coming in. >> thanks. >> they fled bombs, bullets, and death, but they can't leave behind the trauma of a bloody civil war. so, as we go into this next phase, you know, a big part of it for us is that
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thousands are attempting to flee the bloodshed in syria, but for those who made it out, a hidden crisis is emerging for the youngest victims, that means coping with the latest lasting scars and the traumas of car. here is the cnn international correspondent arwa damon. >> they play like all children, but each has a heroing tail of bombs, bullets, and death. >> i'm drawing a tank and a gun one little girl calls out. others write free syria. this is one of many centers that has been established as a killed friendly state. >> the concern right now is about coming up to winter.
getting them into school, to play, learn, and heal, and to create a sense of familiarity and routine. this will be the most powerful way in which they can learn and heal from the horrors they have been through. >> at another center, a social worker shows us treez two drawings. this reflects an angry distraught child. the same child colored this three months later. in another room, parents are registering their children for school. in this part of the country, they anticipate close to 2,000 kids. they were shocked to have registered nearly three times that. approximately 79,000 refugees. many of them are absorbed by the
population and creating a crisis. many of them live in cramped homes, known to be the poorest in the country. worst off in camps like these. historically home to syrians now expanding and becoming more permanent structures. this family arrived a few days ago. the bombs were too close, too many people were dieing around them, so they left, they say. >> this family's story is so similar to every single one we have been hearing from all of these refugees that were forced to flee their homes with absolutely nothing. they have been able to get together these bits of wood, and the skrabs craps of fabric they been using so far, but they too are employering people for more help. >> and organizations who can help are struggling. unicef, for example, has only 25% of the funding it needs for
it's efforts in lebanon alone. having failed to stop the slaughter in syria, the international community can at least try to ease the trauma of war. arwa damon, cnn. and the slaughter continues, at least another 90 people were reportedly killed in syria just today. one presidential candidate has no chance of making it to the white house, but might hurt mitt romney's chances. stand by. and the only reporter on the ground right now with the space shuttle endeavor. thomas sargent. nobel laureate in economics, and one of the most cited economists in the world. professor sargent, can you tell me what cd rates will be in two years? no. if he can't, no one can. that's why ally has a raise your rate cd.
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president who almost certainly have never heard of, but he might have chance in a crucial background state. >> virgil gud works the crowd at a fair in virginia. this six-term congressman has worn many political hats. >> you've got to be willing to step up to the plate. >> he's been a democrat, an independent and a republican. he lost his gop congressional seat in 2008. >> made in the usa? >> now, he's running for office again. this time, for president. this time under the banner of the constitution party. >> we're running a shoe string campaign. we won't have a lot of tv ads. we won't have a lot of mass mailings, but we will be grass roots campaigning. >> good believes in a no exceptions end to illegal immigration. he wants to reduce the number of legal immigrants in the country as well. he also supports term limit frs congress and major federal budget cuts including -- good is
his own campaign manager, fund-raiser. but could still be a major game changer. >> virgil good is a wild card, particularly in virginia. the most recent polls showing a very tight race. good could be a factor and he could be factor even if he wins only a handful of votes. >> latest polls show a neck and neck race between president obama and governor mitt romney. virgil good is only a blip on the polls, but just his presence alone can upset the best laid plans by the romney campaign if he sifens off enough votes. he is asked about it just about everywhere he goes. >> good gives his answer. it comes down to convictions.
>> i don't think we're going to be a spoiler. we are doing the right thing. it will help america if we can get a lot of votes. if we win, it will be a tremendous help. it would shake up washington and an average citizen would be president instead of someone what is backed by the super pacs. >> long shot, long odds, but they don't deter. now, there are other third party candidates, notably libertarian candidate, gary johnson and joel stein. reince priebus was asked whether these outside candidates, if any of them might turn out to be spoilers and he is dismissing them saying they are nonfactors. that was the word he used. >> thanks very much for that. so, it used to hurdle through space. now, the space shuttle "endeavour" is moving slowly. very slowly, to its retirement home. about once a month. last time i was at a gas station
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it's hard to tell. maybe not so hard to tell. the space shuttle "endeavour" actually moving through the streets of los angeles right now, very, very slowly. the retired shuttle is only going about 12 miles, but it's expected to take two days to get there. casey wians is walking alongside. what's going on, casey? >> reporter: well, wolf, one of the reasons it's going to take two days, they have to be so careful. it's such an engineering feat to move this through the streets of los angeles. just a couple of minutes ago, the platform and the shuttle actually came to a stop. they tell me that they noticed some pressure differentials on the platform, so they had to
stop the shuttle and balance everything out. they expect it to resume its journey sometime in the next several minutes. it's really been an incredible sight to watch all day long. this platform is mounted on dozen of wheels that move around almost like the wheels on a grocery cart and it allows this platform to move backwards, forwards, right, left. they go through some very, very tight spaces. maneuvering around telephone poles, trees. they've had to take powerlines down. you look at -- i can remember the shuttle and when we saw it in orbit and everything looked so easy and graceful. almost seems as though moving it along the ground in los angeles is a much more difficult feat than to move through space. as we say that, the shuttle has started moving again toward the california science center near the campus of the university of southern california and near the los angeles coliseum. it will